Aveneu Park, Starling, Australia

The granted to them by the Constitution, especially

The Civil Rights Act of 1964, although a controversial issue during the time it was created, it is seen today, as one of the most world changing and liberating legislation passed in the history of Congress. Not only did the bill give civil rights to African Americans, it also set the foundation for the fight for women and other minorities to gain their rights. Through the longest filibuster in American history, and restraint even after the bill was passed, the law survived the storms from all sides. The Act is and forever will be the basis of fighting for the civil rights of a group.After the passage of the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments, the African Americans of the United States were still not receiving the rights granted to them by the Constitution, especially in the South. With Jim Crow laws and other oppressions to African Americans, there was a rise in protests of civil disobedience something was bound to set Congress into motion. A major factor that showed the unfair and uncalled for treatment blacks were receiving was the media and spread of news through broadcasting.  At the protests and demonstrations in Birmingham, Alabama, the news media did not let the violence stop them from broadcasting, if anything it fueled them to work harder to spread the truth to the American people in the North who were oblivious to the chaos that was erupting in their country. On June 11, 1963, President John F. Kennedy addressed the nation on the inequalities that the African Americans of the country were facing. He asked Congress to assess his legislation that would eliminate discrimination in public accommodations, employment, voting, and education. The pressure that civil rights activist had put on the President and Congress forced action to be taken. After the death of President Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson was sworn into office and made it his first goal to see the passing of the civil rights bill. President Johnson would push for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to be the “lasting legacy” of Kennedy. Along with the lobbying efforts of NAACP, the efforts were strong and memorable.Overcoming their differences in parties, four members of Congress recognized the need for this bill. In the House, William McCulloch, the senior Republican on the House Judiciary Committee worked with Emanuel Celler, the Committee’s Chairman, to make a compromise that at the time seemed impossible. Together they created changes that were an equal in between for the parties. In the Senate, Hubert Humphrey, the Democratic Whip, enlisted Everett M. Dirksen to rewrite the disputed phrasing and provisions of the proposed bill. They put behind their differences and decided to work together to make the bill passable by both houses but strong enough to still have a lasting impact worth fighting for. The changes that were made, gained the supporters enough votes to end the filibuster of the century. Without these compromises, the probability of the bill actually passing dropped considerably. On July, 2, 1964, by the risks and compromises taken by many, Lyndon B. Johnson signed the bill and the change started, allowing the legacy to be fulfilled. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 bans discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, or religion. Title II and III of the Act states that discrimination in public accommodations part of interstate commerce is prohibited and that state and local governments are forbidden to discriminate on the same terms in public facilities. These titles are two of the center provisions of the Act. Public accommodations according to JFK is ” hotels, restaurants, theaters, retail stores, and similar establishments” but the term has been put up for debate in the past. Another strong provision of the Act is Title IV, which promotes the desegregation of public schools (or any schools funded by the government), and gives the Attorney General the power and responsibility to file lawsuits against those who do not comply to execute the law and mandate. Title III strongly and firmly declares that state and local governments are forbidden to discriminate in public facilities.Although the above-mentioned provisions are very important, the core and most known provision of the Act is Title VII. Here it is concluded that discrimination by employers based on color, race, sex, national origin, and religion is banned. Not only did it set that discrimination in employment is not allowed, it also created the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) a bipartisan committee to receive, investigate, and reconcile the complaints that are to be filed by individuals when there is a strong probability that discrimination has transpired. This commission is a major implementer of the law, by having the responsibility to promote equal opportunity and ensure fair hiring systems. If the EEOC is unable to fix the problems, the individuals must file a report with the Department of Justice, more specifically the Attorney General. If evidence is found of “patterns or practices” of discrimination, then the EEOC must refer the case to the Department of Justice for action to be taken. The Attorney General also has the responsibility given to him within the Act, to file and fight in lawsuits against state governments that supported segregation.The Commission of Civil Rights, was made into a permanent commission to prevent discrimination in federally funded agencies. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is a cross-cutting requirement, meaning that it is required by all federally funded agencies and programs. If there is not compliance, the funded money can be cut. The Commission of Civil Rights would enforce this by investigation. Another agency that was created to be in charge of implementation on the local level is the Community Relations Service. This is to assist local issues of discrimination and other civil rights issues at the local level. It must be remembered that during the 60s, there were people who still believed in segregation. Even after the passage of the law, it had to be implemented and face the test of bureaucrats. It took a long time for all the provisions of the law to be followed, which is understandable for such world-changing legislation. There were questions as to if private businesses had to follow the law, or if it would only be enforced in government connected businesses. This led to a quick privatizations and still segregation. Eventually, the Supreme Court ruled this unconstitutional and the Act was applied in all sectors. With most legislation, and especially controversial legislation period, the actual implementation of the law can be entirely different from what the writers and supporters intended it to be. The most predominant example in the case of the Civil Rights Act is the loss of the word “sex” in Title VII. To understand why this amendment of the Act was never pursued, first, the circumstance of how it was added in must be taken into account. When the bill was in the House, Howard W. Smith, the chairman of the House Rules Committee, who was so opposed to the bill he thought to add in a poison pill amendment in an attempt to kill the bill or at least cause more areas for the government to be focused on so race was not the main focus. By adding the prohibition of discrimination based on sex in employment, he believed it was a brilliant plan because of the different views on women at the time and how much work would need to be done, still, the Act passed. Because of this view on the amendment, the fact that it was only put there in an attempt to kill the bill, there was no implementation occurring for a long period of time. The EEOC, who was supposed to fight for the equality in the workforce for women did little to nothing in women’s cases, and usually went against them. In the first few years of the law being passed, there were no lawsuits filed with the Attorney General to fight against sex discrimination. Even though there was no action taken on the basis of this amendment, it proved to be a strong argument and support for the women’s movement that would occur in the future years. Therefore, Title VII can be considered the catalysts that would change not only the lives of African Americans, but also women. Without the failed attempt to kill the bill, the second wave of feminism might not have packed as strong of a punch. With the Civil Rights Act behind them, feminists and women all around the country were able to take discrimination cases to court, instead of having to push through the seas of Congress to get a firm platform to stand upon. That is not to say that the Feminist Movement would not have occurred, that is clearly not the case considering the rise in feminist leaders before the Act was passed. The Act only gave them an even stronger debate that had to be considered and followed, because it was law. Because of the inactiveness of the EEOC, the National Organization for Women was created in 1966. NOW lobbied for women’s rights and for legislation to be passed in Congress, and fought for them in court cases of discrimination. With the direct impact on women from the Civil Rights Act, women carried the amendment far to get the rights and equality legally given to them. Even though it took years to implement into everyday life, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 will forever be considered a drastic change for the better. Through the many trials thrown its way, the Civil Rights Act still holds strong in the history of the United States and will continue on until the end.

x

Hi!
I'm Mack!

Would you like to get a custom essay? How about receiving a customized one?

Check it out